6 Ways To Start Putting Yourself First

If you’re like me and love making others happy, it can be such a rewarding feeling knowing that you put a smile on someone’s face. However, so many times, we lack the boundaries to make sure we are not allowing others to dictate our lives. It’s time to start thinking about how you can firmly place your boundaries while also making others happy at no expense to your mental well-being. Here are some ways you can start practicing putting yourself first:

  1. Check Your Calendar Before Saying Yes

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Before taking on any more work or making any promises, make sure you are able to fully commit. Don’t say yes so that your ego can be fed. Don’t say yes because you want people to like you and want them to know that you are useful. Take care of your shit first before committing to someone else’s.

2. Start Saying No

If you don’t want to do it, then do not do it! You are under no obligation to say yes to anyone so stop feeling guilty for saying no. We’ve been taught to put others before ourselves our entire lives but who will put you first when you’re busy putting others needs and wants ahead of your own? As my favorite poet says,

No might make them angry, but it will make you free.- Nayyirah Waheed

PS: I am still celebrating Homecoming so I had to honor Beyoncé in any way I could.

3. Take Mental Health Days

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We all know these jobs will replace us in a second should we fall ill or going through something that will physically or mentally take us out of work. Start practicing taking mental health days. These are so important for not only your mind, but your body as well. We live in a society that glorifies hard work even if that work means suffering mentally, physically or emotionally. So, take that day off and learn to just do nothing.

4. Take Yourself Out

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You know that new coffee shop/restaurant/bookstore that you’ve been wanting to go to but keep waiting on someone else to want to go too? Just go. You don’t have to wait on someone to start experiencing new things. You know the only reason you don’t want to to go alone because you are afraid of looking alone. Stop waiting and go.

5. Do What You Love

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I know we have heard the phrase, “You only live once” our entire lives but it is so damn true! We only get one life like this and it is up to us to make the best out of it. Stop underestimating yourself and do the things that make you happy, however that looks like. Stop allowing the fear to run your life. Commit to enjoying this life by committing to do the things you want to do. Leave your mark on this world by doing exactly what you came here to do.

6. Surround Yourself with People Who Love You

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The people around you can make or break you. When you surround yourself with people who love you, respect your boundaries and want to see you thrive, it is easy to put yourself first because you know you have a solid support system. Keep the people around who do not feel entitled to your time and love, but rather grateful that they get to see you live your best life.

There are many ways to start practicing putting yourself first and it may be hard at first, you may even lose some friends. But, anything that you lose by putting yourself first was not meant to be in your life. Make sure your cup is full first before pouring yourself into others.